Planning on traveling abroad and want your pooch to tag along? There are some things you need to know before booking your flight. Read on!

Ask The Experts: What Dog Parents Need To Know Before Traveling Internationally With Their Pup

Planning on traveling abroad and want your pooch to tag along? There are some things you need to know before booking your flight! Since I’m just starting to explore international travel myself, I turned to my good friend and travel expert Natalia Denise. Packing for two canine kids, one human son, and a finacé, you can always find Natalia and her family catching a flight to some amazing destination. She documents her trips and offers up advice on her lifestyle blog, La Joly Vie. Read on to get her dog travel tips for a successful international flight: 

Q: Do You Need To Purchase An International Plane Ticket For Your Dog And What Fees Can Dog Parents Expect To Pay? 

A: Traveling is especially fun when you can bring your pet along, but traveling internationally can be a bit confusing. Not only do both originating and destination countries have their own requirements, but airlines also have specific pet policies. Airline pet policies vary significantly so the best option is to check with each airline before booking your flight.
Most pet fees are usually $100- $200 per pet, but there are other fees incurred besides the airline pet fee.
For travel from the US, most countries require a specific form filled out by a veterinarian and endorsed by the USDA. The endorsement fee is about $40 per form plus the veterinarian fees, which can run upwards of $100. Other tests such as tapeworm, internal/external parasites, microchips, and blood titer tests, if required, will affect the cost.

Q: Most Airlines Allow Up To Two Dogs Per Domestic Flight (In The US), Is It The Same For International Flights?

A: That’s pretty standard, although, some airlines only allow one pet per passenger or some none at all.

Q: Does Your Dog Need A Passport Of His Own?

A: Sort of. A “pet passport” is simply a term used to represent all of the pertinent documentation needed to take your pet to other countries. Customs officials will need to see these documents in order to clear your pet for travel. Your veterinarian can help you create a pet passport for travel to almost any country in the world. For example, if you are from the United States and are visiting most European Union countries then the pet passport will consist of the following:
  • The Annex IV and APHIS 7001 forms for the country you will be visiting completed by your veterinarian and endorsed by the State USDA veterinarian.
  • Your pet’s inoculation record, which must be attached to the certified Annex IV form.

Q: Do You Need To Take Any Special Paperwork To The Airport?

A: Working closely with your veterinarian will help ensure that all of the right paperwork is included in the pet passport. This part is super important as the documentation is time-sensitive.
Every country has very specific requirements regarding vaccination, microchipping, and quarantine. Although there are various diseases that pets can carry, there are none considered more serious than rabies. Before your pet travels internationally, it is important that you know the rabies classification of your pet’s originating country as well as the rabies classification of its destination country. Each country falls into one of three categories: rabies-free, rabies-controlled or high-risk. Click here to check the rabies classifications of the countries you’re looking to visit.

Q: What Are Some Tips For Keeping Your Dog Comfortable On Such A Long Flight?

  • Buy an IATA-approved carrier (some airlines sell carriers that fit the exact requirements) and get your fur ball used to the carrier before the flight.
  • Buy tickets early since some planes limit the number of pets allowed to travel on each flight.
  • If your pet gets anxious, check in as late as possible to minimize the time your pet spends in the carrier and bring some Baby Benadryl in case you want to offer some relief.
  • Consult with your veterinarian!
  • Don’t forget a travel bowl or water dispenser to keep your pup hydrated! My favorite is the H2O4K9 water bottle or the collapsible bowls that are lightweight and don’t add bulk!

Q: What Do You Do For Potty Breaks When Taking Your Dog On Such A Long Trip? 

A: A lot of airports now have pet relief areas so make sure you research the airports you will be departing from/arriving to prior to your trip. Training pads are the next best solution. I would even place one inside the carrier since most airlines don’t allow you to take pets out of the carrier during the flight.

Q: Did Your Dog Go Through A Quarantine Period Once You Arrived Abroad?

A: Thankfully no. But we flew from the USA to France, which aren’t considered high-risk rabies countries. Some countries will require it depending on the originating country. Also, some will forego the quarantine if the pet has a Blood Titer test. There are several countries where quarantine is unavoidable, though.

Photo Via: La Joly Vie

Q: Is There A Quarantine Period Once You Get Back To The U.S.? 

A: Generally speaking, fully vaccinated dogs with the correct paperwork and testing should be able to enter without a problem.

Q: Anything Else Dog Parents Should Know Before Booking An International Flight With Their Dog?

A: Planning ahead is going to be the best way to ensure you get all the proper paperwork and testing and to make sure traveling with your pup is as stress-free and smooth as possible. Consider everything when traveling long distances: length of the flight, weather, pet carrier, etc. And pack lots of treats!

A Little About La Joly Vie

Launched in 2017, La Joly Vie is the ultimate destination for everything travel, motherhood, and style. As founder Natalia Denise and her family earn more stamps in their passports, she’s sharing their lessons and tips with the world. La Joly Vie was created for the unconventional woman–those with a taste for adventure and hungry for the world. It’s the savvy woman’s guide to living a beautiful life on your own terms. Whether you’re chasing dreams or chasing toddlers, Natalia believes we can all do it in a cute pair of shoes! Connect with Natalia: WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST